The way we are treated as kids shape us as adults. We might not even know that some of the things we learned as children stick with us to this day – both good and bad! If you want to make sure you’re doing the best thing for your kids, which you obviously do, then you need to give them the crucial things they need to be happy. Are you making sure your kids have the following 5 things?
Your child needs to foster a loving connection with you, of course, as well as family members and pets. Your child really needs to feel like they are deeply loved, so make sure you eat with them, laugh with them, play with them, read to them – and show them that you’re there for them, no matter what. Hold them often. This also teaches them how to forge meaningful connections with others.
Experience Of The Real World
This might sound counterintuitive, but you can’t try too hard to make your kids happy. Trying too hard could mean pandering to their every whim. You might buy them a toy every time they feel sad, for example. They need experience of the real world so they don’t grow up feeling entitled. You’re not actually responsible for your child’s happiness, and allowing them to feel things like sadness and frustration is good for them sometimes. You can’t fix your child’s feelings, so allow them to develop coping strategies to navigate life better instead.
Make sure you don’t wrap your kids up in cotton wool – take them places like PDPlay from time to time and let them explore. This will teach them so much more than you could ever tell them.
If you’re not happy, your kids will pick up on it. One of the biggest causes of stress and unhappiness in kids is stressed out, unhappy parents. They have a sixth sense for this stuff! Make time for your own joy and relaxation and your children will learn from you. Make sure you take the time to work on your other relationships too, such as the one with your partner.
Praise, The Right Way
You might think you’re praising your children properly, but be surprised to learn that it’s actually hindering them in the long run. If your kids only get your praise when they’ve achieved something, such as scoring a goal or getting a multiplication right, they’ll think they have to achieve to get approval from you. This can affect their confidence, as they feel they are only valued by things that are out of their control. Instead, make sure you’re praising their efforts. Praise the hard work, the consistency, the creativity – rather than the achievement itself. This will ensure you are helping your child to develop a growth mindset.
Room To Fail
You need to give your child room to fail so that they can learn how to get back on the horse. Don’t do their homework for them, or make them feel bad if they haven’t been able to do something. Teach them that failing is a good thing to further foster that growth mindset!